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Financial Compatibility Test -- long post
Old 05-08-2008, 12:37 AM   #1
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Financial Compatibility Test -- long post

Anyone try this test?

When couples clash over class - MSN Money

[Edit: the test is in the multimedia slide near the top. You may need to scroll a bit]

I took it, thinking I would be bemused by some well meaning platitudes at the end of the test but I found their inferences very offensive. There are only 8 questions, which I have abbreviated below. I include them because I thought my responses were rather reasonable and I was shocked at my "evaluation". Here are the questions:

1) Did your family a) belong to; b) lived near; or c) work at a country club?

I didn't really have an answer that fit but thought (c) was an attempt at a joke or somewhat perjorative so I chose (b)

2) Who cooked dinner at home? a) chef; b) parents; or c) self

My mother was a SAHM so I chose (b)

3) How did you get your first brand new car? a) from parents at 16; b) bought it myself; or c) never owned a new car

I've never owned a new car, although when I was 6 my mother and father let me choose between one of those cars that looked like a boat and a 67 bolero red Camaro -- restoring it is one of my retirement hobbies when I get there . I've only had two cars, both old, used up cars, but currently own none since its not useful living in Manhattan.

4) What is your attitude about money? a) can't take it with you; b) I spend it when I see value; or c) why buy new when used is fine

I chose (b) because I research something to death and buy what I think is the best for the value

5) If you suddenly inherit $20,000 what would you do with it? a) spend it at Neiman Marcus; b) buy a $10,000 mutual fund and spend the rest on a vacation; or c) put it all into a savings account because investments lose value

I chose (c) because they didn't have a choice for a $20,000 mutual fund and I don't need any extra money to be able to go on vacation. This question made me think about the attitude of the person who framed these questions because $20,000 is too small of a sum to change anything I would do.

6) How do you select new luggage? a) buy what I like most; b) buy what is on sale; or c) tape up the old one

I chose (a) because whatever I decide has the most value is what I like the most, ie, it always has all the features I want

7) How do you feel about your job? a) it gets me out of the house; b) I love my profession; or c) who cares, I gotta eat.

I chose (b) because I actually like what I do

8) Your sibling has lost his job and wants to borrow money. Do you say a) I'll help you get a job but you need to stand on your own feet; b) stay with us so you don't need to pay for food or rent; or c) how much do you need?

I chose (c) since I would just give my sister what she needed, rather than loan it.

After answering these questions, here is the response:

You're a blue-collar penny-pincher

You didn't have much money growing, and you still don't. Your financial decisions are fueled by fear that it will all be taken away from you. You stretch a penny farther than anyone you know because you've vowed that you'll never let yourself or your family go hungry. Even if you become successful, you never leave the fear of poverty behind, and a spouse who doesn't share your background may view your parsimony as a form of punishment. Allow yourself and your family a nice treat once in a while.

I was incredulous when I read this. It seemed that being rational and fiscally responsible was equivalent to being a cheapskate who used money to punish loved ones. I was appalled because almost all of the drivel is completely untrue [it's true that I didn't have much money growing up since my father started out as a private in the army]. I also hate the false innuendos -- you still don't have money -- or IF you become successful. What pisses me off is that a person trying to better his financial situation is going to take this test and think he is some kind of pecuniary monster. Okay, now I'm ranting. Sorry about the long post.
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Old 05-08-2008, 06:37 AM   #2
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My answers are in bold type:

1) Did your family a) belong to;b) lived near; or c) work at a country club?

It was actually more like a men's city club, but pretty exclusive. It had a pool, dining room, and so on, and we went there to eat now and then.

2) Who cooked dinner at home? a) chef; b) parents; or c) self

I cooked for the family after I was about 10. But, before I was 10 my mother cooked. The test gave the same results either way.

3) How did you get your first brand new car? a) from parents at 16; b) bought it myself; or c) never owned a new car

Yeah, like my parents would have bought me any car, much less a new one! Something about "building character".

4) What is your attitude about money? a) can't take it with you; b) I spend it when I see value; or c) why buy new when used is fine

I don't spend as much as some, but it didn't ask that.

5) If you suddenly inherit $20,000 what would you do with it? a) spend it at Neiman Marcus; b) buy a $10,000 mutual fund and spend the rest on a vacation; or c) put it all into a savings account because investments lose value

(like you, I would have selected a $20K mutual fund but that wasn't listed).

6) How do you select new luggage? a) buy what I like most; b) buy what is on sale; or c) tape up the old one

7) How do you feel about your job? a) it gets me out of the house; b) I love my profession; or c) who cares, I gotta eat.

8.) Your sibling has lost his job and wants to borrow money. Do you say a) I'll help you get a job but you need to stand on your own feet; b) stay with us so you don't need to pay for food or rent; or c) how much do you need?

My results from the test were:

You're a bourgeois bargain-hunter

Most likely from a middle-class upbringing, you know the value of hard work, but aren't above splashing out when you can afford it. You were never exactly poor, but you believe that money doesn't grow on trees. And while you like new things once in a while, but you believe that following trends is a waste of money. You might spend a little too much time at the office, which could upset a spouse who doesn't share your work ethic. Chances are you could relax a little - - you're probably doing fine financially - - but there's always a little voice inside warning you not to get too comfy.

I was never exactly poor? Bourgeois? Where, pray tell, did an 8 question test come up with all of THAT erroneous information? I think they are assuming a severe lack of mobility within the (wealth based) class structure.

Tests this short are so ridiculous. I agree - - don't take it seriously, and blow it off. It's worth just about exactly what you paid for it.
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Old 05-08-2008, 03:20 PM   #3
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It's strange that your answers aren't too different from mine but the result is very different. It's as if the sole answer of belonging to a club bumped you into the bourgeoisie class. Of course, with only eight questions, I should have expected that.
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Old 05-08-2008, 03:35 PM   #4
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I'm a "Blue Collar Penny Pincher" too. I had money growing up, and I have it now. Guess I'm just a cheap bastard.

1) Belonged to a country club
2) My parents cooked
3) Bought my new car myself
4) Why buy new if used works just as well?
5) Put it all in a savings account
6) A little duct tape goes a long way.
7) Job: I gotta eat.
8) Sibling: How much do you need?
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Old 05-08-2008, 04:27 PM   #5
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I am a high end money honey
1) Embassy club
2) Had a cook
3) Bought a new card myself
4) I spend it when I see value
5) I would put it all in stocks but that wasn't a choice so I picked b) $10,000 in mutual and vacation
6) Buy what I like the most
7) I love my j*b (until I can FIRE)
8) I would refer my sibling but that implies my friends own companies.
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Old 05-08-2008, 05:10 PM   #6
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I'm a penny pincher also....

who knew except EVERYBODY....
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Old 05-08-2008, 05:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Want2retire View Post
My results from the test were:

You're a bourgeois bargain-hunter
Same results as W2R with different responses. I think that she and I had very different childhoods.

I went b,b,c,b,b,a,b,c
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Old 05-14-2008, 04:03 PM   #8
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Its interesting that for three of you, your parents belonged to a country club. I'm not sure if it has the same meaning now but when I was a kid, it seemed (from my eyes as a kid) that that was an indication of wealth.

When I was in Japan, the movie "Ordinary People" came out. Many of my friends asked, do most Americans live like that? Is that what an ordinary person's life was like? They weren't focusing on the underlying themes but the lifestyle.
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Old 05-15-2008, 04:38 PM   #9
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Apparently I'm a blue collar penny pencher. I'm somewhat distressed at the luggage question not listing 'leftover Wal-mart sack' as an option.
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Old 05-15-2008, 04:41 PM   #10
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'When I was in Japan, the movie "Ordinary People" came out. Many of my friends asked, do most Americans live like that? Is that what an ordinary person's life was like? They weren't focusing on the underlying themes but the lifestyle.'

Had a similar experience with a college student that worked for me. He had lived for a while in the area the movie was filmed on location, and couldn't relate to the feeling of loneliness expressed by the characters. To him is was one of the best night spots around - how could anyone sit around bored in a hotel room?
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Old 05-15-2008, 04:59 PM   #11
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I'm a blue-collar penny pincher!

I didn't have much money growing up (true) and still don't (true, I'm not a brazillionaire yet)

We didn't have country clubs around where I grew up. I'm sure we wouldn't have been members even if we did.

Vacation with my family was... well, mom referred to it as 'the Clampetts have arrived'. Clothes went in dad's TDY bags, food in the cooler (going out to eat, even on vacation, was a rare treat indeed), and if there wasn't room then the rest went in wal-mart bags. Heck, just this year we got my parents nice luggage for Christmas when it was on a huge sale, and that's the first new luggage they've owned.

Mom was a SAHM. She cooked, I started helping when I was 7-8. She's proud of the fact that her two boys are better cooks than she is. So, I grew up in Upper Michigan... it's not uncommom to get down in the -20 to -40 with windchill range. I used to help dad work on the car out in the driveway (no garage) when it wouldn't start. That's the biggest reason for where I'm at now, I vowed I'd make enough when I was an adult that I'd be able to pay someone to work on my car... kind of messed up for a 14 yr old I guess ;-)

I bought my first car when I was 18, and only because I needed it to get to my internship. I bought my first new car when I was 21 and made it big.. second job after college and earning 65k a year. I didn't understand value all that much back then. It was right when Olds was offering the 0% financing. We bought the Accord new as well in 06, and vowed to never buy new again.

The thing says that I live in fear of poverty. I don't see that. I was poor and happy once (family below the poverty line, government cheese from the foodshelf, food stamps, all that), I can be poor and happy again. I'd rather live modestly now so I can stop working sooner and continue to live modestly later.
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Old 05-15-2008, 06:31 PM   #12
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I think the columnist wrote that to pay her therapy bills.

Or maybe her therapist assigned it as homework.

Judging from the quiz, I apparently don't have any money either. But my first thought about the $20K inheritance was that it'd make a nice tax deduction as a charitable donation...
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Old 05-16-2008, 11:24 AM   #13
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i had to stretch to answer some of those questions but generally, apparently, i'm a bourgeois bargain-hunter.

1) Did your family a) belong to; b) lived near; or c) work at a country club?

Westmount Country Club looks like just a catering joint now but it used to be pretty nice. had my barmitzva there. also went to day camp. i was in charge of the bunny hut and the snake hut. lots of tennis, swimming and we used to eat blackberries right off the bush.


(i'm left of sign holding its corner. my best friend on opposite corner. we never liked the guy in the middle. by looking at our faces i'm pretty sure that's why the camp counselors put us there.)

2) Who cooked dinner at home? a) chef; b) parents; or c) self

mostly we ate out. mom cooked some but also my brother & i learned early to cook. i picked b) parents but i could have gone either way.

3) How did you get your first brand new car? a) from parents at 16; b) bought it myself; or c) never owned a new car

after college i had brand new cars about ever two or three years, but they were company cars. there was no d) so i picked b) since i considered the perk part of my salary.

4) What is your attitude about money? a) can't take it with you; b) I spend it when I see value; or c) why buy new when used is fine

5) If you suddenly inherit $20,000 what would you do with it? a) spend it at Neiman Marcus; b) buy a $10,000 mutual fund and spend the rest on a vacation; or c) put it all into a savings account because investments lose value

b) came closest only i wouldn't spend the rest on vacation. certainly not until the housing crisis is over anyway. boy does my wallet seal up hard & fast.

6) How do you select new luggage? a) buy what I like most; b) buy what is on sale; or c) tape up the old one

selected b) but if i didn't a) i wouldn't buy it.

7) How do you feel about your job? a) it gets me out of the house; b) I love my profession; or c) who cares, I gotta eat.

what job? selected c) as a practical matter. i did b) for a short while but i'm pretty sure i was just fooling myself. certainly after downsizing i no longer b)'d at all.

8 ) Your sibling has lost his job and wants to borrow money. Do you say a) I'll help you get a job but you need to stand on your own feet; b) stay with us so you don't need to pay for food or rent; or c) how much do you need?

even when my brother and i used to do nothing but fight i used to say: "i'd give him a kidney but i wouldn't give him the time of day." i'm not here to teach lessons. i'd rather respect our individual personal space. if i've got extra and he needs it, not a problem. and i sure hope he feels the same way since he's got more than me.
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Old 05-16-2008, 02:23 PM   #14
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Marquette -- Our vacation was sort of like yours. My father was in the service so we moved every two to three years. The move took the place of the vacation. One time we moved from CA to AZ and my mom packed lots of food in a cooler and on the way we saw Hoover's Dam and Grand Canyon. It was lots of fun and eating by the car was like a picnic. I don't think we ever had a vacation that didn't coincide with a move but that didn't bother us because we went to a few fun places.
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Old 05-16-2008, 03:08 PM   #15
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Buddha, my dad was stationed in Las Vegas... and got stuck there for 10 years! But, we did travel for a month every year. Yes, those were awesome times indeed.

I was reminded of what travelling with them was like a few years ago. I had been on my own for a while and decided to go with them to Disney World. we drove from Indiana nonstop to Orlando. When we got there, at 6 am, I said "man, I can't wait to go to the hotel room and take a nap". Mom's reply "what are you talking about? We're not checking in until tonight, no sense paying for an extra day. Besides, the park opens in an hour."
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Old 05-23-2008, 06:27 AM   #16
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Marquette, the funny thing is I completely understand where your mother is coming from because I tell myself the same thing. LOL
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